Ireland’s co-operative housing provider today welcomed the publication of a national Social Housing Strategy to 2020. The Strategy aims to deliver 35,000 homes over the period of the plan to substantially address social housing waiting lists and was launched by Minister Alan Kelly following a visit to a housing co-operative in Dublin City this morning.
As the representative body for housing co-operatives, NABCO welcomed the five key actions to boost supply by Approved Housing Bodies (AHBs). The actions are:
The actions closely match many of the suggestions made by NABCO in the Strategy development process. Multi-annual funding, in particular, is vital to give housing co-operatives the certainty they need to plan for increased delivery.
NABCO welcomed the ambitious target of 5,000 new homes to be provided by AHBs over the next three years. The Association is determined to play its part in delivering these much needed homes and welcomed Government commitment to monitor and review delivery to identify blockages in the process.
New mechanisms of supporting delivery include Public Private Partnerships and a new financial vehicle to draw in private sector investment. While welcoming any new investment into the sector, NABCO cautioned that immediate capital exchequer funding would still be required to ensure delivery is maintained while the new mechanisms are being established. Access to publically-owned sites will also be crucial to support delivery over the medium term.
The Social Housing Strategy was launched by Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Alan Kelly after opening a co-operative housing development in Inchicore in Dublin this morning. Speaking at the launch, NABCO CEO Kieron Brennan said:
“The co-operative here at Camac Crescent is an example of the type of delivery that will be required in the coming years. This mixed tenure development was provided using innovative from the Housing Finance Agency and shows that NABCO is ready and willing to work in partnership to play its part in delivering the scale of housing that Ireland needs.”
He continued: “The Strategy launched today contains many of the key ingredients that we said were vital to help us to step up the scale of our delivery including crucial multi-annual funding. Serious monitoring of delivery will also be required and we would like to see more detail about the immediate funding allocation to support delivery in 2015.”
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